5 things we learnt from Beautycon 2016
The Digital Forensics team were lucky enough to attend London's Beautycon 2016. We wanted to share our thoughts on the five key things that caught our eye.
1. Lime Crime and NYX were the brand heroes
The queues for these brands were so long, from 10am until close. The Lime Crime bags themselves were just as important for social currency as the actual products! In terms of image, Lime Crime and NYX play impeccably to the codes of social media sharing: from Lime Crime’s ‘Made for unicorns’ tagline, passion for memes and emoji obsession, to NYX’s, #swatchlife fixation, community fostering Face Awards and regramming of consumer and influencer content. The playfulness and sheer fun of these brands was mirrored in their stands IRL, with NYX’s ‘spin the wheel to win a product’ to Lime Crime’s Instagram worthy selfie wall. In short, we are obsessed!
2. Tweens rule!
Tonnes of tweens with fierce brows and perfectly contoured cheek bones were there. Gone are the days of goths, skaters, emos, grungers, chavs and townies, putting an end to the ‘awkward’ phase. These young beauty lovers seemed most excited about the make up brands on offer and hung around the blogger zone armed with posters and personalised T-shirts for the Instagram hero of the moment, Jessie Paege. Jessie is a blogger with neon pink hair who frequently posts about gay rights, equality and anti-bullying. She has created a community of over 1.2 million advocates and regularly says she is inspired by her fans’ social media accounts.
Korean skincare was everywhere; especially brand Tony Moly with their Panda range and ‘I’m Real’ sheet masks. K beauty is certainly having its moment in the UK and we saw brands trying to connect with this younger audience at Beautycon. The cute, kitsch, toy-like packaging is made for Instagram and adds a collectable feel, which we saw IRL with people cradling masks and tiny Panda eye brighteners in their arms, then neatly curating flat lays to share on their social media accounts.
4. Online + offline integration = buzz
The brands that created the most buzz on the day were those that combined online and offline marketing. Take Pixi, NYX and Soap and Glory who all asked you to take a selfie with some of their products, tag them and share with your network in order to physically take home some newly released products. Watching the crowds, this was definitely not a big ask. People were very willing to let their network have exposure to these new products, and were more than happy to go home to try them all for themselves. It's a clever way of generating buzz around a new product launch, which in turn encourages a snowball-virality among followers’ networks, their followers’ networks and so on.
5. It’s all about the community
This was the overarching theme of the day. Whether it’s the launch of Undecided, a new app that allows users to post questions to the community around how they should do their make up today and crowd source a response in seconds, to panel discussions which highlighted the unique role that young vloggers play as a community of entrepreneurs who shape the beauty trends of tomorrow, to brands wanting you to share their products on your online community to help spread their message, we predict that fostering and sustaining a community will be at the forefront of beauty brands’ strategy in 2017. It will be interesting to see which mainstream beauty brands adopt this strategy and how far their reach can spread.
- Article by Holly Dellamura